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Personal health matters men keep private

Michael McGee | 6/7/2013, 11:43 a.m.

While a prostate exam is a very simple process, it is not something that can be done at home. A urologist or similar expert should be consulted.

“We certainly see more and more and more early diagnosis of curable prostate cancer,” Danoff stated. “Prostate cancer in a young man kills if not detected at an early stage …”

Danoff also has some thoughts – and warnings – about the various erectile dysfunction medicines that have been proliferating over the years. He explained that the majority of medications are safe for those who have a medical need for them, and can be helpful, but only for enhancing performance.They will not create physical desire that isn’t there, he noted.

Younger men need to be careful not to abuse the drug, he warned, because this can lead to a condition called priapism. “Which is an erection that won’t go down,” Danoff explained. “It can be quite dangerous and devastating in terms of future erectile dysfunction.”

Most treatments sold over-the-counter to make the penis longer, he added, are useless. “… And will benefit the seller infinitely more than they will benefit the buyer. And if it’s not FDA approved I feel strongly they shouldn’t be used.”

A good schedule for reproductive health checkups, Danoff said, would be annual genital exams, including a prostate exam, for men around the ages of 40 to 45 and older.

“I think if you’re African American, perhaps in the early 40s,” he said. “I think that if you have a male member of your family with a history of prostate cancer, [you] probably should be checked beginning at age 35.”

“A woman easily goes to her gynecologist. A man has to be pushed to take care of his health,” the doctor said.

When he started his practice it was very rare for him to see a patient that was 100 years old. Now it isn’t that uncommon.

“Now I see one or two a week – many of them functional. So, people are living well into their 80s, well into their 90s, and I think male genital health is an important part of that.”